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proportion of males in total population, 52-8 per cent. Average density
of population, 82*2 persons per square mile; number of villages per
square mile, -85 ; persons per village, 96 ; persons per occupied house,
67. In religion, the District is almost exclusively Hindu. The Census
of 1 88 1 returned the Hindus as numbering 479,948, ° r 97 ' 2 P er cent
of the total population; Muhammadans, 11,261, or 2*3 per cent;
Christians, 2393; Buddhists, 32; and Parsis, 7.


The Musalmans are chiefly recent immigrants from the plaii
descendants of the retainers of the Kumaun Rajas. The n
the Hindus belong to the tribe of Khasias, not to be confua d i
inhabitants of the Khasi Hills in Assam. The Khasias i n arc-

to all intents and purposes Hindus in religion and customs, an.'.
language is purely Hindu, as shown both by the archaic records extant
and by their present dialect. There is every reason to believe that
the original Khasias, or inhabitants of Khasdes, mentioned by the
Hindu lawgiver Manu, some 2500 years ago, were identic al
the modern tribe of Khasias. Successive immigrations from the plains
imposed upon them masters, who absorbed all power, and introd
observances characteristic of the Brahman and Rajput castes, to whii h
they themselves now claim to belong. Indeed, these two
mans numbering 120,137 in 1881, and Rajputs 216,247)
nearly three-fourths of the entire population. The Doms (104,93
number), corresponding to the Chamars of the plains, rank as the
lowest of the Khasias, and until the British occupation they wen
prandial slaves of the landholders. It is by no means proved that I
Doms are the descendants of any non- Aryan aboriginal race. They
share with their Khasia countrymen the superstitious belief in demons
and sprites common to all mountaineers. Every crag and summit has
its local deity and shrine, at which kids are offered in sacrifice ; at the
larger temples at river junctions buffaloes are similarly slaughtered.
Most of the great tribes of Northern India have their representatives
amongst the hill communities, and among the Brahmans the tribe
of astrologers, known as jyot is/is or Jos /lis, have attained the gi

The Bhotiyas (from Bhot, the corrupt form of Bod or Tibet) inhabit
the country lying north of the great peaks. The Bhotiyas arc
of Tibetan origin, but they are little inclined themselves to admit this
fact. In the Juhar valley especially, they have adopted the la;
and customs of their Hindu neighbours; though, if report be
when once across the border they do as the Tibetans do, and are
Buddhists. The features and dialect of the Bhotiyas reseml
those of the people of Tibet. The Kumaunis themselves are a tol<
fair, good-looking race; and, except in the extreme norther:
any difference of feature may be attributed to clima:
than to any extensive intermixture of Tartar blood. On the wb
the character of the people is estimable and pleasing. '1 he 1
active, cheerful, honest, and industrious. The women m their y
are generally pretty. The custom of polyandry is here unkr.
but polygamy is frequent.

The 515. villages or hamlets of the District are scatter)
the hill-sides, the houses being built of stone laid in I



roofed with slates, or with planks or thatch. No less than 4662
villages contain less than two hundred inhabitants; 435 from two
to five hundred ; 44 from five hundred to a thousand ; and only 10
upwards of a thousand inhabitants. The better class of dwellings
are ornamented with wooden carvings, principally of tun - wood
(Cedrela toona). The only native town is Almora. Champawat, the
ruined capital of the Chands, ranks only as a village, though it boasts
of a tashili in the old fort. There are large bazars at the European
stations of Naini Tal and Ranikhet. Milam, the principal residence
of the Juhar Bhotiyas, is a large, well-built village, but is uninhabitable
between November and May. Of the mandis or market gatherings in
the bhdbhar, Ramnagar on the Kosi is the most considerable.

Classified according to occupation, the Census Report of 1881
returned the male population as follows:— (1) Professional, including
all Government servants, and the learned professions, 3599; (2)
domestic class, 5586; (3) commercial class, 1405; (4) agricultural
class, 150,946; (5) industrial class, 13,113; (6) indefinite and non-
productive class, 86,405.

Agriculture. — The agriculture of the bhdbhar is being assimilated so
rapidly to that of the plains, that a separate notice of it is hardly
required. Wheat and mustard form a large proportion of the rabi or
spring crops, and the irrigation absolutely necessary for all cultivation
in that tract is supplied by a well-organized system of small canals.
The area available for cultivation is small in Kumaun. In order to
remedy this deficiency, the sides of hills, wherever possible, have been
cut down into terraces, rising above each other in regular succession, and
having their fronts supported by stone abutments. The soil, except in
some of the valleys, is often poor and stony, and requires much manure.
In certain localities, periodical cultivation with the hoe only is carried on.
On the better kinds of land, rice, wheat, and tobacco are grown ; on
the others, according to the season, wheat, barley, mustard, vetch, flax,
Indian corn, millets, pulses, sugar-cane, cotton, oil-seeds, etc. The
staple food of the peasantry is the millet called mandua (Eleusine
corocana), the rdgi of the Deccan. The cucumber family is largely
used ; and in the southernmost pargands, ginger, turmeric, and capsi-
cums are profitable crops. Potatoes are becoming common in some
localities, but are not so plentifully grown as in the Simla Hills.
Fruit is very plentiful in Kumaun. The oranges grown here are of
excellent quality.

The tea plantations form now an important and valuable feature
in the District, but are almost entirely in the hands of European
owners. In 1876-77 the number of gardens was 19, covering
an area of 2222 acres. The total yield of tea in that year was
261,060 lbs. In 1882-83 the number of plantations was returned at


H, but no statistics are given showing the area undei
the out-turn. Both are probably nearly double the return foi
The recent opening up of the Central Asian market througl
traders, who come to the plantations in person, has
impetus to this industry, which had begun to decline.

Landed property in Kumaun, both in theory and practice,
been vested in the State. The occupant landholders possess an hereditary
and transferable property in the soil, but their rights were never inde-
feasible and have always been revocable at the hands of the BOVO
The proprietary right is in a state of extreme sub-division, cat h ha
or village being shared commonly amongst many petty propri
Where the proprietary and occupancy rights are vested in the same
individual, the cultivating tenants under him possess no rights in
the soil, and are mere tenants -at -will. Fully three-fifths of the
arable land in Kumaun are cultivated by the proprietors themselves.
Proprietors simply pay their share of the Government den
while old occupancy tenants (khayakdrs) are subject to an additional
money payment, in commutation of certain dues and fees iormcr*.y

In native times, Brahmans and other principal grantees cultr.
their lands by means of hdlyas or domestic slaves. In the tea
plantations, the planters hold their estates in what woul
elsewhere called pure zaminddri right, including that \
of the adjacent forest and waste, within fixed boundaries, to which
Government has given up its claim. A very few instaiu i
tenure also exist among the principal natives of the 1 I
The head-man of every village is called the pradhdn, whose
is often hereditary, but essentially elective. In large est
clan has its own representative head-man. The Government rei
is collected by and paid through the pradhdns, who are remui
by rent-free lands and certain fees and privileges. Th
local police officers in each village for reporting offer,
higher class of hereditary head-men are called sijdnas, kam'u.

Natural Calamities.- -No universal famine has taken pla<
since the British gained possession of the District. The
of this kind were in 1838 and 1867. Disastrous tl
unknown, but sometimes, as in 1840, the valley Ian.
sudden freshets, which cover the soil with barren grave,
rains, too, wash away field terrace-walls, and h<
occasionally injured by landslips. In September 1
caused much damage from landslips and floods. In
mahdls, avalanches are always threatening the
and of travellers, and laden cattle and she<


whelmed in the passes; but no great disaster has yet occurred
requiring special notice. On an average of five years, 58 persons
have perished yearly in Kumaun from the attacks of wild animals
and snake-bites ; while the record of a single year shows the destruction
of 45 tigers, 124 leopards, and 240 bears, at a cost of ^"146 in Govern-
ment rewards.

Manufactures, Commerce, etc. — If we except tea prepared on the
European plantations, there are no manufactures of any note. The
people of the northern tracts, who use woollen clothing, weave a coarse
kind of serge. The trade of Kumaun may be described under two heads
— first, that in the hands of the Bhotiyas with Tibet \ and, secondly, that
with the plains. The Tibet trade is almost a complete monopoly
in the hands of its carriers. The imports are ponies, yaks, sheep,
salt, borax, gold, wool, drugs, precious stones, yak tails, coarse woollen
cloth, and Chinese silks. The exports are grain, cotton goods, broad-
cloth, quilts, hardware, tobacco, sugar, spices, dyes, tea, and wood for
house-building. In the year 1876-77, imports via Juhar were valued
at ,£12,600, and exports at ^4100; imports via Darma and Byaus at
^8500, and exports at ^"5500 in value. No later statistics are

Kumaun sends to the plains grain of sorts, clarified butter, tea,
ginger, turmeric, red pepper, potatoes, hill drugs and spices, bark for
tanning, pine-tar, honey and wax, and a little iron and copper, besides
the timber and wild jungle produce of the bhdbhar. Its imports com-
prise every article of necessity or luxury, both for Europeans and natives,
which the hills themselves do not furnish. Trade has of late much
improved, owing to the increase of markets and the improvement in
communications. The roads in the hills are for the most part only
bridle-paths, more or less well laid out, but all now well bridged,
English iron suspension bridges having superseded the old native rope
/hulas over the larger rivers. Cart-roads run from Haldwani to Xaini
Tal, and from Ramnagar to Ranikhet and Almora, the latter penetrating
into the very heart of the District. Total length of made roads in
1882-83, 1402 miles. Among the resources of Kumaun, which may
be further developed, are the mineral and metallic products. At
Dechauri in the bhdbhar, experiments are being carried on with a
view to the profitable working of the tertiary iron-ores, in the vicinity of
forest fuel.

Administration. — The public revenue under the native rulers was
derived from a variety of sources besides land produce, most of which
were given up at the conquest by the British. Traill's land assessments
were for short periods; Batten's Settlement in 1846 was for twenty
years ; Beckett's existing Settlement is for thirty years, and is the first
based on a regular survey. Though it has produced a large increase


of the Government demand, its incidence on the land ii light, the
average rate being Rs. i. 3. 11, or about 2s. 5$&, per culth
or local acre, and Rs. o. 13. 10 per bisi on total cultivate.:
cultivable area. The total revenue of Kumdun District, in
was ,£68,585, of which ,£25,374 was derived from the land. I |
cost of officials and police of all kinds, ,£13,874. Fur the collet ti
the revenue, as well as for general duty, 2 tahs'ilddrs are station
Almora and Champdwat. They are assisted by local patwdris, a peculiar
class of mixed fiscal and judicial petty officers, each of whom has 1
of one or more pattis, paid chiefly from a cess of 4 per rent, on tl.
revenue. Besides this cess, there is a District ddk or post-oft.
3 per cent, in lieu of personal service, and a school cess to 1 11
vernacular education. A small tax of from 1 to 3 rupees (2-.
levied on village water-mills for grinding corn. There are police stations
at Almora, Naini Tal, Ranikhet, Champawat, and Shor, within the hills,
and at Ramnagar, Kaladhungi, Haldwani, and Barmdeo in the bhdbkar %
where protection is required at the mandis or marts. There is a jail
at Almora, but crime in Kumaun is, generally speaking, light

The Civil Courts, presided over by the European staff and 2 native
subordinate judges, have a simple procedure, resembling that of our
county courts, and deal with a rather excessive amount of petty litigation,
chiefly connected with land. The language used is Hindi, written 111
the Nagari character, and well known to the suitors.

Climate, etc.— With the exception of the bhdbhar and de
Kumaun on the whole enjoys a mild climate. Even at heigh!
5000 feet upwards, supposed to possess a European dii
periodical rains and atmospheric conditions preceding an
them, throw the whole southern slope of the great Himalaya!
almost half the year into the sub-tropical rather than the tempo
region. The seven months from October to April are delightful.
rainfall of the outer range, which is first struck by the m< 1
that of the central hills, in the average proportion of 80 in<
No winter passes without snow on the higher ridges, and in *
its occurrence is universal throughout the mountain I
especially in the valleys, are often severe. The averag
the five years ending 1881 was returned at 21-25 per t!
are numerous Government dispensaries in the District, and I
Mission has its medical establishments also. Kumaun
visited by epidemic cholera. Leprosy, affecting 4 '
is most prevalent in the east of the District. There
at Almora for those suffering from this disease Goitre an
afflict a small proportion of the inhabitants, especially m
eastern pargands. The hill fevers at times
malignant features of plague. The mahdman |


formerly confined to Garhwal, has of late years extended its ravages to
Kumaun. The authorities are giving their anxious attention to sanitary
measures, the total neglect and violation of which have produced among
the natives fatal typhoid outbreaks. Murrains break out from time to
time among the cattle. [For further information regarding Kumaun,
see the Gazetteer of the North-Western Provinces, vols. x. and xi.
(Himalayan Districts), by Mr. E.T.Atkinson, C.S. (Allahabad, 1881
and 1882); the Settlement Report of Kumaun District, by Mr. J. O'B.
Beckett, C.S. (1875); a collection of Official Reports o?i the Province
of Kumaun, edited by Mr. J. H. Batten, C.S. (Agra, 185 1); the Census
Report of the North -Western Provinces and Oudh for 1881 ; and the
several Provincial Administration and Departmental Reports from
1880 to 1885.]

Kumbhakamdrug. — Mountain in North Arcot District, Madras
Presidency. Lat. 13 34' 35" n., long. 79° 55' 22" e. The principal
peak in the Satliawad range of hills; highest point, 2598 feet above

Kumbhakonam. — Town in Tanjore District, Madras Presidency. —
See Com bacon um.

Kumbharli-ghat. — Road over the Western Ghats, between Ratna-
giri and Satara Districts, Bombay Presidency. Lat. 17 26' n., long.
73 45' e. ; 123 miles south-east by south of Bombay. The road leads
from Karad in Satara to Chiplun in Ratnagiri.

Kumbher {Kumher). — Town in Bhartpur (Bhurtpore) State, Raj-
putana. Lat. 27 19' n., long. 77° 25' e. ; n miles north-west of
Bhartpur city. Thornton states that it was unsuccessfully besieged by
the Marathas in 1754 ; and surrendered to the British in 1826, after the
capture of Bhartpur. The town is on the high road to Dig. It was
founded at the beginning of last century by the chief of Jaipur, and
is a small place situated in a plain, and surrounded by a mud wall and
ditch. It has a large palace built by Budan Singh, which, although in
a good state of preservation, is now infested by bats, and never used as
a place of residence. The palace of the Raja commands the surround-
ing plain, and serves as a fortress. Post-office. Population (1881)
7306. Hindus numbered 5972, and Muhammadans 1334.

Kumharsain. — One of the Simla Hill States, under the Govern-
ment of the Punjab. Lat. 31 6' to 31 20' 30" n., and long. 77 22' to
77° 35' E - The village of Kumharsain is situated in lat. 31 19' n., and
long. 77 30' e., about 40 miles east of Simla on the road to Kiilu.
Area of State, 90 square miles, containing 254 villages or hamlets,
and 1445 houses. Total population (1881) 9515, namely, males
4920, and females 4595. Hindus number 9405, and Muhammadans
no. This State, formerly a feudatory of Bashahr, was declared inde-
pendent after the expulsion of the Gurkhas in 1815. The sanad, dated


7 th February 1816, binds the chief and his heirs to rcndei :
service to the British Government. The Rana of Kumhai
Singh, is a Rajput, born about 1850. The State pays a tril
British Government of ^200. Estimated revenue of the chi \

Kumhrawan— Pargand in Digbijaiganj tahsll, Rai Bare'. [
Oudh; bounded on the north by pargand Haidaralud of I:
on the east by tahsil Mohanlalganj of Lucknow, on the
pargand Hardoi, and on the west by Rokha Jais. Waten
river Naiya. Area, 70 square miles, or 44,619 acn
(1869) 44,619; (1881) 35,259, namely, males 17,456, and I
17,803. Classified according to religion, Hindus numbered 3;
and Muhammadans 1225. Government land revenue, ^57*9
dence per acre, 3s. 2fd. The chief proprietary body an
Rajputs, a branch of the Chamar Gaurs, said to be the di
of a Gaur widow, who, at the extirpation of the Kshattriyas by the
Brahmans, found an asylum in a Chamar's hut. The memory of this
humble refuge is still kept alive by the worship of the rdpi or
cutting tool. Great numbers of the Chamar Gaurs now hold vill
in Hardoi District, and it is probable that the Amethias were an offshoot
of the same immigration. Tradition discovers them first at Shiupuri
and afterwards at the celebrated fortress of Kalinjar. Somewhere
about the time of Tamerlane's invasion of Hindustan, Raipal S
left Kalinjar and settled at Amethi in Lucknow, and a branch of the
family subsequently obtained Kumhrawan. Of the 58 villages com-
prising the pargand 40 are tdlnkddri, 4 zaminddri, and 14 pat t id ' •

Kumilla. — Head-quarters town of Tipperah District, Bengal — See
Com ill a.

Kumiria. — Village and head-quarters of a police circle (t/idnd) in
the head-quarters Sub-division of Chittagcng District, Bengal : situated
near the sea-coast, on the main road from Tipperah to Chin...
on the banks of the Kumhfra Khal (Crocodile Creek), from which it
derives its name. Lat. 20 30' 15" n., long. 91 45' 4°" ,: -

Kumlagrah.— Fortress in Mandi State, Punjab; situated in lat. 31*
48' N., and long. 76 43' e., near the south bank of the 1>
consisting of a range of forts, about 3 miles in length, constnii I
of masonry and partly of the natural sandstone rock. Th<
stronghold crowns an isolated peak, whose precipiti
feet above the Beas, with double that elevation above
Chand, Raja of Kangra, attacked the fortifications unsui
General Ventura, the partisan Sikh commander, succeeded in earn in
them, against the popular belief in their impregnability.

Kumpta {Coompta). — Sub-division of North Kanai
Bombay Presidency. Situated along the coast, an
north by Ankola ; on the east by Sirsi and Siddapur ; on the SOU!


Honawar ; and on the west by the Arabian Sea. Area, 230 square
miles. Population (1881) 58,758, namely, 29,088 males and 29,670
females; density of population, 255*4 persons per square mile ; number
of towns, 2 j villages, 115 ; houses, 9803. Hindus number 55,010, or
93 per cent. ; Muhammadans, 2099, or 3*5 per cent. ; 'others,' 1649.

The coast-line, beginning south of the Gangawali river, consists
of long stretches of sand, fringed with cocoa-nut gardens, crossed
by frequent rocky highlands and headlands, and by tidal creeks.
Eight to twelve miles inland the hills are clothed with forest, which
becomes denser as the Sahyadri Hills are approached. Near the
coast is a belt of rice land ; beyond is the central plain occupied
by rice and sugar-cane ; inland, rice gives place to rdgi. Water is
plentiful. The soil is sandy and red loam. Products, cocoa-nuts,
rice, areca-nuts, pepper, sugar-cane, and pulses. The whole Sub-division
has been brought under the Bombay Survey Settlement. Average
rainfall for ten years ending 1879, x 3 2 '4 inches ; in one year, 1877, 201
inches fell. Agricultural stock in 1 88 1-82 — Horned cattle, 28,317
horses, n; sheep and goats, 253; ploughs, 4900; carts, 146. In
1883, the Sub-division contained 1 civil and 2 criminal courts; number
of police circles (thdnds), 3 ; with a regular police force of 43, and a
village watch of 22 men. Land revenue (1881-82), ^12,122.

Kiimpta (Coomptci). — Chief town of the Kiimpta Sub-division,
Kanara District, Bombay Presidency ; situated on the sea-coast, on the
north side of the Kiimpta creek, one mile east of the lighthouse, and
about 113 miles north of Mangalore, and 40 miles south of Karwar.
Lat. 14° 26' N., and long. 74 27' e. Population (1881) 10,629,
namely, 5571 males and 5058 females. Hindus numbered 9189;
Muhammadans, 705 ; Christians, 679 ; and Jains, 56. Municipal
income (1880-81), ^1163, or 2s. ijd. per head.

Kiimpta, though an open roadstead, is a place of large trade, owing
to the roads which connect it with the cotton marts of Dharwar ; but
it is expected that this traffic will be much affected by the new railway
which is to have its terminus at Marmagao, in Portuguese territory.
The lighthouse, in lat. 14 25' n., and long. 74 23' e., is 6 miles to the
north of Fortified Island, and consists of a white masonry column or
tower, 60 feet high, erected on a hill 120 feet in elevation, and about
half a mile to the east of the rocky cliffs of Kiimpta point. It exhibits
a fixed white light, at an elevation of 180 feet above sea-level, which
is visible at the distance of 9 miles from the deck of a ship in
clear weather. This light overlooks the mouth of the creek which
leads boats at high water up to the cotton warehouse on the south side
of the town.

Kiimpta seems to have been formerly a place of some note.
Its lanes are straight and fenced with stone walls, and it has many


cocoa-nut gardens. Twice it had the misfortune of havil
army encamped in its vicinity, and on both occasions it w,
down by some of the irregulars. The town contains a sub-j
court, a telegraph office, a post-office, a school, and a dispensary, and is
the head-quarters station of the chief revenue and police officers of the
Sub-division. Its trade consists chiefly of cotton, spices, and grail
first coming from Dharwar District, and the rest from the upland
country of Kanara. The only manufacture is the carving of a few-
articles of sandal-wood, which are exported to Bombay. Klimpta
is one of the seven ports which make up the Honiwar Customs
Division. The average value of imports at Klimpta port alone for the
five years ending 1881-82 was ,£269,754, and of exports -
In 1881-82, the imports were valued at ^2 19,415, and the exports at

Kunawar (Kandwdr). — The upper or north-eastern Sub-dn
of Bashahr (Bassahir) State, Punjab, consisting in great part of the
valley of the Upper Sutlej. Lat. 31 16' to 32 3' x., and loi
to 79° 2 e. ; bounded on the north by Sptti, on the east by Chinese
territory, on the south by Bashahr Proper and Garhwal, and on th<
by the Kochi Sub-division of Bashahr. Estimated area, 1730 square
miles. Population (1881) 14,315.

Kunawar consists of a rugged country, 50 miles in length by 40 in
breadth, through whose ridges winds the deeply cleft valley of the
Sutlej. The precipitous banks of the central river afford little room
for cultivation ■ but the valleys of its tributaries are assiduou>!y I
by the mountaineers. The chief of these are— the Li or river ol
Spiti, the Darbang, the Pijar, the Kochang, the Malgin, the \
Wanirar, and the Keuncha, which flow into the Sutlej on the rig!
and the Hocho, the Tughlagkhur, the Tidang, the Baspa, the Panwi,
the Soldang, and the Kundala, which enter from the left. I

Online LibraryWilliam Wilson HunterThe imperial gazetteer of India (Volume 8) → online text (page 42 of 64)